King says final election results will take longer, calls for patience
Senator Angus King urges voters to remain confident in the U.S. electoral system and warns that final election results are unlikely to be compiled by the end of election day, in a column published Wednesday in Time magazine.
Appeals for the King’s confidence came as President Donald Trump made comments at a press conference on Wednesday that described the electoral system as flawed and unreliable, leaving many of his critics worried he might claim electoral fraud and refuse to step down if his Democratic opponent, former Vice President Joe Biden, wins on November 3.
“Like so many routines, the coronavirus pandemic has turned this centuries-old tradition upside down,” King wrote. “This year, whether you vote for a Republican, Democrat, Independent, or none of these, we’re all going to have to realize that what we know at the end of Election Night will be more of a halftime results score. final. “
King advised voters to plan ahead when and how they will vote. The coronavirus pandemic can mean long lines to vote in person, and the recent reorganization of the U.S. Postal Service could make it more difficult for Americans to vote by mail before their state’s deadline.
He also encouraged citizens to be patient while awaiting the results of the national elections.
“Over the past few years, the American public has often expected to know who our next leaders will be before the night is over; this year we have to let go of that notion, ”King warned. “This is an unprecedented election, and there’s a good chance we won’t know who will win on election day.”
Trump has attempted to discredit postal voting and sow distrust of the electoral system among his supporters. His re-election campaign and the Republican National Committee are embroiled in lawsuits in all states across the country, including Maine, to limit access to the ballot or prevent the expansion of postal voting.
When asked if he would embark on a peaceful transition of power by journalist Brian Karem of Playboy, Trump replied, “You will have a very peaceful – there will be no transfer frankly.”
“There will be a sequel. The ballots are out of control, you know that, and you know, who knows that better than anyone? Democrats know this better than anyone, ”Trump mentionned.
Acknowledging the president’s rhetoric, King urged the nation to “focus on the facts.”
“Foreign enemies trying to create chaos or national leaders seeking to prematurely declare victory – or online bots trying to divide us or distort the logistics of the 2020 voting schedule – there will likely be a number of attempts to undermine confidence in America’s democratic systems before anything is done, ”he wrote.
Senator Susan Collins also released a statement on Thursday in response to Trump’s comments.
“One of the foundations of our democracy is a peaceful transition of power between administrations,” she said. “This has been true throughout our history, and this year will be no different. The winner of the presidential election will be sworn in on January 20.
Referring to the founding principles of the country, King concluded with a call for unity and patriotism.
“For the sake of the country we love, each of us must face the uncertainty and confusion of the moment with preparation, faith and patience,” he wrote. “The results will come – and when they do, we must move forward, together, to continue our age-old work of striving to form a more perfect union.”
Photo: Aaron Bernstein via Getty Images